This article has been updated since its original publication, following additional information / clarity.
New measures are expected to come into effect from Monday December 6th, 2021, which will affect people travelling to Romania.
On December 5th, authorities announced a new series of measures which are aimed at preventing the spread of the new COVID-19 variant, B.1.1.529, which the WHO has named “Omicron”, which has already been detected in at least 30 countries and the first two cases being confirmed in Romania yesterday evening (Dec 4th, 2021).
The new variant has caused alarm among health authorities because of its unprecedented series of mutations, of the 50 mutations, more than 30 are on the “spike protein” which is the part that vaccines target. Subsequently, it is feared that these changes can make the virus more transmissible and also evade existing immunity conferred by vaccinations or prior infections.
New Measures Introduced for Travel
The authorities have informed that Romanians and European citizens who are travelling from outside of the EU, must have a negative PCR test for COVID-19, which was performed within 48 hours, even if they have already been vaccinated. European citizens who have not been vaccinated will be required for them to quarantine for 10 days.
European citizens who are traveling from other EU countries, will be required to present a EU “Green Certificate” proving vaccination, passing through the disease or having a receiving a negative PCR test completed within 72 hours.
Unvaccinated people or those who have not already passed through the disease, from EU countries in the “Red Zone” for epidemiological risk will be required to quarantine for 14 days.
Anybody who cannot prove vaccination, passed through the disease or has not received a PCR test will be required to quarantine for 14 days.
The CNSU publish updates to the list of countries considered am epidemiological risk, here.
Introduction of the “Passenger Locator Form”
The head of DSU, Raed Arafat announced, that from December 20th, Romania will begin using the Passenger Locater Form (PFL) which is already implemented in many other countries.
He explained that, “This form, according to the discussions that took place today, will be implemented from December 20. Those who now travel to other European countries already know that this form exists, so Romania will introduce this type of form as well”.
The form will be mandatory and will be required to be completed by those entering Romania, both from inside and outside the EU.
Vaccination Remains the most effective form of protection
Experts are expecting an increase in the incidence rate across Romania in the coming weeks and they have stressed that vaccination remains the most effective and most important form of protection, especially for those who are categorised as “vulnerable”, according to a government statement.
The executive is calling on local authorities to re-evaluate the situation with regard to unvaccinated people with a focus on those who are considered vulnerable to benefit from priority treatment at mobile vaccinations centres.